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Oct24-05, 10:21 AM
In today's news and relevant to this thread:
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Federal regulators on Thursday approved what would be the first transplant of fetal stem cells into human brains, a procedure that if successful could open the door to treating a host of neural disorders.
The transplant recipients will be children who suffer from a rare, fatal genetic disorder.
The Food and Drug Administration said that doctors at Stanford University Medical Center can begin the testing on six children afflicted with Batten disease, a degenerative malady that renders its young victims blind, speechless and paralyzed before it kills them.
An internal Stanford review board must still approve the test, a process that could take weeks.
The stem cells to be transplanted in the brain aren't human embryonic stem cells, which are derived from days-old embryos. Instead, the cells are immature neural cells that are destined to turn into the mature cells that makeup a fully formed brain.